A senior at Episcopal Academy, Kennedy was named the Inter-Ac’s girls tennis Most Valuable Player in 2019 as a sophomore. She has received All-Main Line girls’ tennis first team honors each of the past three years. Next fall, she will be playing tennis for Georgetown University. Off the court at EA, she is one of the photography editors for Scholium, the school newspaper, and is a member of Key Club, which includes leading tours and being a shadow student for visitors. EA girls tennis coach Whit Powell said, “Ashley is one of the most complete tennis players I’ve seen. She has an all-court game and can adapt to any style of play. What makes her exceptional is her ability to dictate play from the baseline or the net. On top of it all, she is a tremendous athlete so she moves effortless around the court. She is a combination of power, finesse and intelligence.”
Main Line Media News: What do you think has been your best match of your Episcopal Academy career (to date)? What is your sharpest memory if it, and what was working particularly well for you that day?
Ashley Kennedy: Throughout my five years on the team, I have played many talented players in and outside of the Inter-Ac. My most memorable match would be an away match at Penn Charter when I was in 8th grade. I had just come back from competing in the Junior Team Tennis Nationals and wasn’t 100 percent physically. I received a lot of great advice from my coach, Whit Powell, and support from my team, which helped me win the match 6-2, 6-0. I played really smart and used every tool I had to win for my team.
Main Line Media News: What aspect of your game did you work on most during the past summer? What are you hoping to achieve this fall?
Ashley Kennedy: Over the summer, I worked a lot on playing an all-court game, specifically transitioning up to net and touch shots – drop shots, drop volleys and short angles. I hope to have a great season with the team and to continue improving every time I step on court.
Main Line Media News: Who are your favorite tennis players? Do you try to pattern your game after any of them?
Ashley Kennedy: My favorite player is Rafael Nadal. I try to play with heavy spin and angles when I’m on court which is a big part of Rafa’s game. He also fights for every ball and every point, which is what I want to do on the court.
Main Line Media News: What do you think is the strongest part of your game? What part of your game are you currently working on the most?
Ashley Kennedy: My return and my forehand are definitely the strongest parts of my game right now. I’m working on my serve, transitioning to the net, and using more variety.
Main Line Media News: Who have been your top tennis mentors, and what was the most important thing you learned from them?
Ashley Kennedy: My top mentors have honestly been all of my coaches. I feel like I learned a lot from each of them and I play using a combination of everything they taught me. I would not be the player I am today without them and I am extremely grateful for all of their help.
Main Line Media News: What attracted you to Georgetown University? What will you be majoring in?
Ashley Kennedy: There are so many things that attracted me to Georgetown! When I first looked into the school, I was drawn to the strong academics and athletics in a great town! As I got deeper into the recruiting process, I got to know the coach, the girls on the team, and the school better and I knew that it was the right choice for me! I am planning on majoring in either pre-med, biology or chemistry.
Fun facts – Ashley Kennedy
Favorite TV show: Friends.
Favorite athlete: Rafael Nadal.
Favorite pre-match pump-up song: “Blinding Lights” by The Weeknd.
Favorite team: Philadelphia Eagles.
Favorite place to visit: Naples, Fla.
Favorite pre-match meal: Fettuccine alfredo with chicken.
Person I most admire, and why: “The people I most admire are my mom and my grandfather. They have taught me so many lessons about how to succeed and be the best person, student, and player I can be.”
(To be selected as Main Line Girls Athlete of the Week, a student-athlete must first be nominated by her coach.)
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